LA Observed pointed out yesterday the sad contrast between two recent reports, one which identifies a substantial increase in the number of “high net worth individuals” in LA–people so important they have their own acronym (HNWI)–and the other that gives an overview of the growing demand on LA county food pantries. A number of reports about the economic recovery have claimed that job regrowth has mostly been in low paid and unskilled jobs, and perhaps LA is seeing the effects of that trend.
The number of people accessing food pantries has increased 73% since 2008 while the amount of funds and food supplies are not keeping pace, and in some cases are decreasing (take the LA food bank, which is receiving 800,000 pounds less a month from the USDA than it was at the start of 2011.
At the same time, the number of people whose “investable assets” exceeded one million dollars increased 8.8% over last year. Only Houston saw a higher increase. So if you’re one of the many who feel like the middle is getting squeezed right now and there are more and more people living in one extreme or the other, you may well be right. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…. And people wonder why I persist in calling myself a leftist.